Photo: Showbit


Sure, the world wide web, magazines and blogs are great sources of information when it comes to product and treatment recommendations. But to be perfectly honest, nothing beats the professional advice of your personal skin doctor. Not only are they medically-trained professionals, they are the ones who are able to examine the condition of your skin before recommending suitable products and treatments to address your most pressing concerns.

That said, it is absolutely vital to go to someone who’s experienced and understands each patient’s uniqueness before prescribing a treatment plan. However, chances are, it’s difficult to determine this without paying them a visit. To make sure that you’re going to be entrusting your skin health to someone who gets you, here are some of the key questions you should be asking your doctor at your next scheduled appointment:


1. How can I slow down signs of ageing? 

Photo: Shutterstock

It seems like everyone wants to look youthful for as long as we can. Whether it’s fine lines, dark spots or a loss of elasticity, the signs of ageing can catch up with us before we know it. Yet, many skin experts attribute the acceleration of these signs of ageing not to chronological ageing but lifestyle factors like inadequate use of skincare and exposure to the elements. Instead of trying to figure everything out by yourself, have an open discussion with your skin doctor about your concerns and he or she will be able to advise on anything from the skincare products to use, lifestyle changes to make, as well as the aesthetic procedures that are suitable for you.


2. What type of products should I be using? 

Photo: 123rf

Let’s be honest: with the sheer amount of products available in the market, planning a shopping trip at a beauty specialty store or department store can be overwhelming if you don’t know what you’re looking for. To make things easier, you should also ask your skin doctor to recommend the types of products that are suitable for you after a skin diagnosis. Based on your skin type, skin condition and your preferences, your skin doctor should be able to recommend the skincare steps that you need and even the textures that you should look out for (i.e. a gel moisturiser vs a rich cream texture if you have oily skin). Don’t be afraid to ask for specific product recommendations or ingredients that you should look for or avoid.


3. How much sunscreen do I really need?

Photo: 123rf

Sure, you know that sunscreens are a vital part of any skincare regime, and you might even wear one daily. However, one of the most commonly made mistakes when it comes to skincare is using an inadequate amount of sunscreen. To make things even more confusing, there are dozens of product formats, including makeup primers, BB creams or foundations that come with UV protection. So feel free to let your skin doctor know what types of products you’re currently using and from there, he or she will be able to ascertain if the amount you’re currently using is sufficient, and if not, make appropriate recommendation on how to improve.


4. What is causing my recurring acne? 

Photo: Shutterstock

You might be well into your 30s but still often plagued with breakouts and you can’t figure out why. The truth is, there are multiple factors that could cause acne. So instead of taking the trial and error method and testing out endless zit-busting products to no avail, let your skin doctor examine the breakouts to determine the suitable treatment plan, which could include anything from adjusting your diet to recommending prescription drugs to help with your condition.


5. What aesthetic treatments are suitable for me? 

Photo: 123rf

In this day and age, it might be easy to do your own research about the dozens of lasers and injectables that are available in the market. However, it’s quite difficult to know which ones of them truly work for you. Depending on your lifestyle, age, skin type and even diet, a proper treatment plan can involve the use of several different technology to achieve optimum results. Make sure you communicate clearly to your skin doctor what are your main concerns and what is the effect you wish to achieve. And don’t be afraid to ask for examples of his or her past patients to get a better idea of what you’re getting yourself into.